It’s the year 2800 and the Earth is a complete mess, full with garbage produced by humans. The garbage has left the Earth uninhabitable and completely devoid of life. Well, not completely: one small robot, WALL•E, and his pet cockroach still remain.
His job is to clean up the Earth and he’s been doing it for 700 years. The film starts by zooming in, from space on to the Earth. The camera goes through a thick cloud of what appears to be the debris of satellites around the earth. There is a thick cloud of dust, but as it lifts we see pile upon pile of garbage.
It looks like a disaster story, but in amongst the horror of this scene a bubbly, quirky robot playing a jolly tune captures our attention. This is WALL•E in all his little glory.
Immediately we warm to this curious and ingenious robot. Though his work is mundane, he seems content, and amuses himself by collecting interesting odds and ends from amongst the garbage. Little does WALL•E know, that things are soon about to change.
This expertly crafted story reminds us that we all long to be, and have a need to be, loved and to love – can there be a more obvious treatise to this film in “love one another as I have loved you”. Connection, to one another and the desire to connect with something outside of ourselves also weaves thematically through the film.
In the Bible we read about human responsibility for the Earth. God gives humans stewardship over the Earth. This stewardship is not ownership such that we can trash the place and expect no repercussions.
Indeed, the Bible says, ‘the Earth is the Lord’s and everything within it’ (Psalm 24:1). Stewardship is conducted under the watchful eye of God who is concerned for all of his creation.
It is important for us to have a high view of our role in conserving the planet and a high view of this planet itself.
It is not hard for us to think of something beautiful in this world.
WALL•E challenges us to find the beauty in both excellent storytelling, in our world and those around us.
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